TRUMPF: From a supplier to a global high tech company.

3D Printing

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It all started in 1923 when Christian Trumpf with his two partners by his side, acquired the mechanical workshops of Julius Geiger GmbH, a small specialized manufacturer of flexible shafts in Stuttgart Germany. Little did they know that they were beginning a technological revolution that would change the way people used tools in their daily work forever. In those days, shafts were made from thick steel wire and were used only in the equipment for dental practices and in the printing industry. However, with the entry of motorized drive, they started manufacturing shafts at an industrial level for processing metal and wood. By 1927 as the company grew, it had 70 employees working and had to move to a larger production site in Stuttgart suburb of Wellimdorf. Even during World War II, when other companies were forced to remain shut, TRUMPF continued with the flawless production of electric shears and flexible shafts. To everyone’s surprise, none of its production buildings were damaged.

As time passed by, in the year 1930, TRUMPF ventured into developing more complex products. The year 1934 it achieved a major technological breakthrough with the launch of the company’s first motor-powered hand shears (HPS-201) for cutting sheet metal out of which came a wide variety of electric shears for different purposes. Later in the year 1937, the company was officially renamed TRUMPF & Co and it remains to date.

"TRUMPF stays ahead by continuously surprising the world with ground breaking solutions for true benefits."

Success post World War II

Below is a short timeline that tells the story of this high-growth company: 

  • 1950: TRUMPF employs 145 people with its sales exceeding 1 million DM. However, within a span of just ten years, it grew to a team of 325 employees and sales of 11 million DM.

  • 1963: TRUMPF launches its first foreign company at the Swiss town of Baar in the Canton of Zug.

  • 1968: Another technological breakthrough as TRUMPF invents Trumatic 20, the first-ever sheet metal fabrication machine with a numerical control system. 

  • 1985: TRUMPF showcases itself as a laser manufacturer with the first self-developed and produced CO2 laser. 

  • 2003: TRUMPF introduces its first machine for metal 3d printing into the market – the Trumaform. However, three years after the launch, TRUMPF suspended its additive manufacturing (AM) activities as the market for AM components was not yet sufficiently developed.

  • 2015: TRUMPF re-enters the AM business and represents three AM machines on the market so far.

  • 2018-2019: TRUMPF achieves record sales of 3.8 billion euros. 

"Our goal is to further develop and digitally connect production technology, to make it even more efficient, precise, and future-proof."

Today with over 70 subsidiaries, the TRUMPF Group is represented in nearly all the countries of Europe, North and South America, and Asia. It has production facilities in Germany, France, Great Britain, Italy, Austria, Switzerland, Poland, the Czech Republic, the USA, Mexico, China, and Japan. By providing high tech solutions, TRUMPF powers with additive manufacturing many industries including aerospace, automotive, medical & dental technology, and energy. TRUMPF stays ahead by continuously surprising the world with ground breaking solutions for true benefits,” says Ramona Hönl, Spokesperson Additive Manufacturing at TRUMPF.

As a family-owned company, TRUMPF has a distinct culture guided by a bold set of values. Everyone is proud of the positive company culture at TRUMPF and shares the same values and goals. As an organization promoting support, growth, and success, TRUMPF intends to satisfy its customers, employees, business partners, and contribute to the betterment of society. Striving to achieve continuous far above-average growth, TRUMPF aims for a higher return on sales as they intend to invest in research and development without relying on anyone financially. Driven by passion, TRUMPF has taken every adversity and challenge by its horns only to emerge as a successful brand of its kind. With the desire to remain independent and grow on their own efforts, all its dealings are characterized by fairness, moderation and trust. “We enable our customers to create excellent products by offering laser and production solutions,” emphasizes Ramona.

Unlocking technology for generations to come

Laser, machine, monitoring, and services are the four major components of 3D printing. However, being a leading provider in all fields, TRUMPF develops the heart of the system itself: the laser. Due to this technological power, TRUMPF is able to develop innovations in 3D printing especially fast and effectively. Subsequently, TRUMPF for example became the first company to print copper and gold using a green laser.

Renowned as a high-technology company, TRUMPF offers innovative production solutions in the machine tool and laser sector. By driving digital connectivity through consulting, platform, and software it has completely transformed the manufacturing industry. In the field of AM too, the company offers laser metal fusion and laser metal deposition technologies. As a laser and machine manufacturing giant, TRUMPF masters the entire process chain and offers a comprehensive solution for the industrialization of AM. Having established itself as the technological and market leader for machine tools, TRUMPF looks forward to continuing its winning streak through innovation and research. “Our goal is to further develop and digitally connect production technology, to make it even more efficient, precise, and future-proof,” affirms Ramona.

In a recent example of a project, the technology companies Heraeus AMLOY and TRUMPF have started working together on the 3D printing of amorphous metals, also known as metallic glasses. Their intention is to establish the printing of amorphous parts as a standard production method on the shop floor by improving process and cost efficiencies. “Amorphous metals are twice as strong as steel, yet significantly lighter and more elastic. They exhibit isotropic behavior, which means their material properties remain identical, regardless of the direction in which the 3D printer builds up the workpiece,” shares Ramona. “A number of areas could benefit from 3D printing of amorphous metals. Key examples include parts that are subject to significant stresses and lightweight design in sectors such as aerospace and mechanical engineering. These materials are also an excellent choice for medical devices due to their biocompatibility.” TRUMPF successfully found a way to process these new materials via 3D printing. 

When the coronavirus started to spread all over the world, TRUMPF was eager to make its contribution towards helping people. Medical face shields were the most needed for the frontline medical staff and its acute shortage left millions of health care professionals unprotected and highly vulnerable to infection. Hence TRUMPF, proactively with a research associate at the University of Stuttgart and other medium-sized companies, manufactured headgear of face shields for hospitals and wholeheartedly supports medical personnel in hospitals. 

For TRUMPF, technological, social, and ecological progress go hand in hand. 

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